They might also say that they live near you, but that they’re away; they could be in another country on a trip or for work, but they’ll almost certainly be somewhere far away where you can’t meet them.The photos used by scammers can also clue you in that something is off.In August, a British man was sent to jail after defrauding two women of over £300,000 (5,300) through online dating sites.He had convinced them that he was a diplomat and that a US marine general had fallen in love with them, causing one woman to pawn jewelry, empty her life savings, sell her car, and take out loans to help this general move to the UK. In 2011, the Internet Crime Complaint Center estimated that the online dating scamming “industry” was worth over million, but it’s likely much higher than that, due to the difficulty of making a good estimate.
Of course, some people are just shy or are nervous about meeting people that they’ve met online—this isn’t anything out of the ordinary (it’s also possible that they’re trying to avoid getting caught by a spouse The Ashley Madison dating site was recently hacked by hackers who threatened to leak the entire database unless the site closed. Asking for any other financial information—where you bank, anything about your credit cards, how much you have in savings—should be a big warning sign.If someone was expressing over-the-top love and passion within a couple weeks, you’d be worried.Early on in a courting relationship, you’ll probably ask a lot of questions, even basic ones like “how tall are you? ” If the person you’re talking to is avoiding these basic questions, that should be a big red flag.If you fall into this category, be especially wary of people that you meet through dating websites.Online dating can be difficult for women The AARP also says that seniors are a common target of these scams.If their profile says they’ve lived in Ohio their entire lives, but they’re using non-standard English, or have notably poor grammar, that could be a warning sign (think of the kinds of errors you’d see in a Nigerian scam email or on the phone, where they need to spontaneously come up with things to say. Obviously, there are plenty of non-native speakers out there who are sincerely looking for a relationship, and they could very well be from heritage speaking communities in the United State or Britain.This isn’t a dead giveaway, but it’s something to watch out for.The profiles of online dating scammers can exhibit some clear signs that something is off—you just need to know what to look for.Most scammers choose victims that are older than they are, for example, so if someone who is significantly younger than you says that they’re interested, it could be cause for concern.Here are six things to keep in mind to help you spot and avoid scammers on online dating sites.Anyone can be the target and victim of these scams—men, women, young, old, gay, straight, white, black, Asian, Hispanic… But the FBI states that women who are “over 40, divorced, widowed, and/or disabled” are prime targets for scammers.